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SOUTHEAST PHILADELPHIA COLLABORATIVE AND SOUTH PHILADELPHIA HIGH SCHOOL
A team from Southeast Philadelphia Collaborative (SEPC) and South Philadelphia High School (SPHS) attended a study visit at the Salomé Ureña de Henriquez Campus on August 7, 2013.  To help connect the dots, we invited Quanisha Smith, from the Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools (PCAPS), to join the visit.  NCCS is providing technical assistance to PCAPS.

The group included Principal Otis Hackney III, an inspiring leader who in his four years at SPHS has worked tirelessly to improve academic achievement, as well as the school’s environment and culture.  However, because of the closing of 23 Philadelphia public schools back in June 2013, this fall the number of SPHS students will go from 600 to 1500. In addition to school closures, the district eliminated a number of support staff positions, leaving a significant gap. To keep its gains the school will need partners more than ever.  The goals of the study visit were to get some ideas for ensuring a safe and positive transition to the new academic year and to learn best practices for engaging partner organizations and guiding them to work in an integrated and coherent way.

BUREAU OF EDUCATIONAL AND CULTURAL AFFAIRS - US DEPARTMENT OF STATE, INTERNATIONAL VISITOR LEADERSHIP PROGRAM AND FRANCE’S AGENCY ON ADVISING BUSINESSES ON DISABILITIES
Jeremy Kreins, general director for the French Agency on Advising Businesses on Disabilities, visited the Salomé Ureña de Henriquez Campus on August 8 to learn about the CAS community school strategy.  Mr. Kreins is the former chief of staff to the Minister for Solidarity and Social Cohesion under the Sarkozy administration.

Mr. Kreins visited the United States under the auspices of the Department of State's International Visitor Leadership Program  (IVLP) to participate in a project on U.S. diversity.  In a note we received the day after the visit, U.S. Department of State official Jean Paul Turco expressed appreciation for our willingness to share our expertise: “Our international visitor was extremely impressed by your hospitality, the valuable information conveyed to him and the sincere atmosphere of the meeting.”  

The IVLP is the U.S. Department of State’s premier professional exchange program.   Forty-seven current heads of government and chiefs of state are IVLP alumni.  CAS National Center for Community Schools has been collaborating with the State Department’s Bureau of Cultural Affairs since 1995.